Local News

Altoona officer enters ARD program

HOLLIDAYSBURG — The Altoona police officer charged in June with DUI has entered Blair County’s Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition program for first-time offenders. Erik Stirk, 40, Ashville, was among a dozen people in Blair County Court on Tuesday for entrance into the ARD program ...

Judge allows former bus driver’s lawsuit

U.S. District Judge Kim R. Gibson in Johnstown ruled Monday that a former employee of Altoona Student Transportation Inc., the company that provides bus service to more than 4,000 Altoona Area School District pupils, can continue with her lawsuit claiming she was fired nearly two years ago ...

Forum helps people with disabilities transition

During breakout sessions at a crowded forum Tuesday designed to teach families of people with disabilities to transition from high school to adulthood, Kim Capenos talked about her daughter, Marabeth, 21 — who has autism and an intellectual disability, but who nevertheless operates a ...

Blair plans to solicit job study proposals

HOLLIDAYSBURG — Blair County commissioners are moving ahead with plans to solicit proposals from companies interested in completing a study of county salaries and job classifications. With as much as $93,600 for the proposed study included in the county’s 2017 bond issue that’s being ...

State association honors college’s in-house counsel

CRESSON — Mount Aloysius College professor and in-house counsel, attorney David Andrews, was recently honored as the 2017 recipient of the President’s Award for Distinguished Career Achievement by the Pennsylvania School Board Solicitors Association. The award was presented at an ...

Area briefs

BEDFORD Police: Woman assaulted, choked man A Bedford County woman is in jail after she allegedly assaulted and choked a man Thursday. State police said Tracey Fletcher-Godfrey, 54, of Everett, was involved in a domestic dispute early Thursday morning. When police arrived, they found a ...

Police: Woman tried to steal empty fentanyl vials from hospital

Story updated 1:50 p.m. Nov. 1 to reflect that vials were empty. - A Juniata woman faces theft and drug charges after she was allegedly caught in a hospital with empty vials that once held fentanyl stuffed in her bra. Andrea Mae Cartwright, 25, of 631 N. Eighth Ave., was arraigned Monday ...

Monkey business

Mirror photo by Patrick Waksmunski Sporting a monkey head in the spirit of Halloween, Andrey Lear, 20, of Altoona, was spotted walking along Bloom Road after making a Sheetz and McDonald’s run Monday afternoon. Lear said people seemed to get a kick out of his costume and although he removed ...

Blair budget under review

HOLLIDAYSBURG — Blair County commissioners met again on Monday to resume review of a 2018 draft budget with a $9 million deficit. Last week, commissioners took a stance against higher-than-usual pay increases in 2018, as requested by the sheriff’s department and the district attorney’s ...

Judge ordered to reconsider baby’s placement

The Pennsylvania Superior Court has instructed a Blair County judge to reconsider his decision to keep a newborn child in a foster home rather than placing the baby with his father. Judge Timothy M. Sullivan in May supported a decision by Blair County Children, Youth & Families to place a ...

Residents could get free health insurance

WASHINGTON — In an odd twist, low-income people in about half of U.S. counties — including Cambria, Huntingdon, Clearfield and Centre — will now be able to get a taxpayer-subsidized “Obamacare” policy for free, according to a new study that suggests some actions by President Donald ...

Tyrone to allow ice skating in park

TYRONE — Borough Council will allow ice skating on the pond at Reservoir Park this winter. Council members amended the park’s governing ordinance after having authorized the borough manager to buy a liner to also allow for skating at the park’s in-line rink. Area residents have ...

Students take on stocking project

BELLWOOD — Myers Elementary School will again partner with the Military Families Ministry to send stockings to deployed service members this year. This schoolwide service project will be launched at 2:45 p.m. Nov. 14 during a school assembly where Santa Claus, military service members and ...

Students take on stocking project

BELLWOOD — Myers Elementary School will again partner with the Military Families Ministry to send stockings to deployed service members this year. This schoolwide service project will be launched at 2:45 p.m. Nov. 14 during a school assembly where Santa Claus, military service members and ...

Men arrested in connection to burglary

Two men remain in Blair County Prison after their arrests early Saturday in connection with a weekend burglary. Kendall O. Geist, 26, and Evan C. Santucci, 31, are accused of breaking into a home on the 300 block of Crawford Avenue Friday night and making off with a 55-inch Samsung flat ...

Court seeks clarification in DUI case

A DUI case in Huntingdon County has raised concerns from a three-judge Superior Court panel that a defendant serving 30 to 60 months in a state correctional institution might have been deprived of his right to legal counsel. The panel has sent the case back to Huntingdon President Judge ...

Blair, Bedford bridges reopen

HOLLIDAYSBURG —Two bridges, one each in Blair and Bedford counties, have reopened to traffic after being replaced as part of PennDOT’s Rapid Bridge Replacement Project. The Kettle Road bridge spanning Sinking Run in Tyrone Township, Blair County, and the Route 56 bridge, spanning Barefoot ...

‘One of the best kept secrets’

EVERETT — Lampire Biological Laboratories and Bedford County have been a good fit for each other. “Lampire has put Bedford County on the map in the life sciences industry. We have watched their steady growth here through the years and are extremely impressed with Greg (Gregory F.) ...

Billions sought in opioid fight

President Donald Trump’s decision to formally label the nationwide opioid crisis a public health emergency led to a chorus of requests that more money and resources be freed locally. Trump announced the move Thursday, opening some federal resources to address the crisis that is killing tens ...

Retired prison warden recalls long career in law enforcement

Michael Johnston retired Wednesday as the Blair County Prison warden, ending 33 years with the county. He became warden on Feb. 25, 2008, at the facility, where he went to work as a part-time corrections officer on Feb. 20, 1984, when he was 21 years old. Blair County commissioners and ...